Call: Robo-Philosophy 2014 – Sociable Robots and the Future of Social Relations

August 20-23, 2014
Aarhus University, Denmark


Sociable robots likely will play an increasing role in future everyday life–assisting and replacing humans in many contexts, from caretaking to teaching to entertainment.  How will this affect human social interaction, as notion and as practice?  Are there limits to the functional simulation of social interaction?  How much of a ‘theory of mind’ do robots need to be ‘sociable’? If we engage with robots as if they were persons, how will this affect how we understand ourselves?  — The conference will address these and other philosophical questions that arise with design and use of sociable robots. Conference contributions will present philosophical research that closely interacts with empirical studies of concrete applications of sociable robots in robotics, psychology, anthropology, or cognitive science, as well as relevant artificial intelligence research. The conference, which will feature 40-60 speakers, is organized in order to clarify the extent to which philosophical research can be used for the design and use of sociable robots.


Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro, Hiroshi Ishiguro/ATR Robotics lab, Osaka University

Prof. Illah R. Nourbakhsh, Department of Robotics, Carnegie Mellon University, USA.


Prof. Mark Coeckelbergh, Department of Philosophy + 3TU.Centre for Ethics and Technology, University of Twente, Netherlands

Prof. Kerstin Dauthenhahn, University of Hertfordshire, Centre for Computer Science and Informatics Research, UK.

Prof. Luciano Floridi. Oxford University, St Cross College, Philosophy and the Ethics of Information, UK.

Prof. David Gunkel, Department of Communications, Northern Illinois University, USA.

Prof. Peter Kahn, Department of Psychology, University of Washington, USA.

Prof. Maja Mataric, Center for Robotics and Embedded Systems (CRES), Univ of Southern California, USA.

Prof. John Sullins, Department of Philosophy, Sonoma State University, USA.

Prof. Wendell Wallach. Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics, Yale University, USA.


Feb 20: Early registration closes.
March 31: Deadline for submissions of papers, abstracts, and posters.
May 05: Final Program posted.
August 10: Registration closes.

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